A man returns to visit his native Sicily after living in New York for a long time. He learns about the Sicilian way of life from stylized conversations with an orange picker, his fellow ... See full summary »
Two segments. The first one arranges six stories from Cesare Pavese's "Dialoghi con Leucò", taken from classical mythology. The second segment is taken from Pavese's novel "La luna e i falò... See full summary »
Far from being drivel, as another commentator has suggested, History Lessons is one of Straub and Huillet's richest and most rewarding films. A young man from the present interviews a series of ancient Romans about the rise of Julius Caesar (the text is adapted from an unfinished novel by Brecht): what emerges is a brilliant (and funny) demythologization, an analysis of power whose contemporary relevance is underscored both by the young man's obvious modernity and by his 3 long drives through modern Rome. Straub and Huillet refuse to cover over the myriad contradictions in their project (the anachronisms, artifice vs. documentary, etc.); instead they heighten these into a rich and challenging dialectic which demands of the viewer intense critical engagement and the patience to learn new ways of looking and thinking.
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